In the spring of 2018 I went to Marrakech with my brother. It was a nice holiday, we had great weather and we enjoyed the culture. While we walked through the bazaar I noticed that the men not only sold their stuff here but also produced it there. They made iron candlesticks in the back and sold them in the front of the shop.
I think it was the first time in my life that I saw someone working on these products in the same place where they would also sell them. It made me feel guilty to see these ladies and gentlemen working so hard for very little money. I walked around there in my polyester pants of a fast fashion chain with my super comfortable sneakers and my biggest concern was which photo I want to post on my Instagram. On the other hand, I loved seeing how these things are made and by whom.
During this trip we also went on a day trip in the Atlas Mountains where hand-woven carpets are made by Berber women. We were allowed to visit a group of women who were all working on a large carpet. They all had their own role. Some were busy with the yarn, others with weaving and fixing the fabric. It was a community of people who were allowed to work on this and then sold it to people like me who are on holiday.
There was a lady who told us that all materials come from Morocco. They also said that a village down the road makes terracotta from clay from the region and a village down the road makes argan oil from the seeds and fruits of the trees we see around us.
It was unbelievable how rich this country was in its own materials and craft. They were beautiful products made with attention in the same place where the materials came from. I couldn’t stop myself and I flew home with a small carpet. Every morning when my feet touch that carpet, I think about those women who made it with their own hands in the Atlas mountains.
This is an ongoing investigation and experimentation about materials that I find in my closet. For more behind the scenes and tips please visit my instagram account @doraevarga